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Liked a comment on the item Eliot Jackson and Phil Young on Racism in Mountain Biking 10/14/2020 1:06 PM

Hi Oz, first up, thanks for taking the time to listen to this episode. As the interviewer, I'll give my personal view on why I didn't dig deeper into Eliot's prior experience of being discriminated against, despite him giving a few examples in the podcast. I didn't personally feel...more

Added a comment about feature Eliot Jackson and Phil Young on Racism in Mountain Biking 10/14/2020 1:05 PM
Oz_Taylor

Hi Chris? Thanks for your reply. I actually thought you introduced the episode well, and clearly stated your position and the level of your knowledge on the whole subject. So from that, I knew it wouldn't go into great depths and that it wasn't going to be an interrogation.

But for me, when somebody is given a platform, the information and opinions they share should be scrutinised. I felt compelled to respond because mountain biking is so close to my heart. To have this guy, who is unknown in the mtb community, on one of the most popular mtb websites talking about colonialism, the slave trade, the Windrush generation, and lynching is divisive.

I really hope that in 2020, we don't need to get into the specifics of what the KKK or slavers did, to know that those events were horrific and should never be repeated. I fail to see the link between those things and racism in mountain biking today. You can use as many woke terms as you like, but hyperbole and sweeping statements need questioning, not simply accepting as fact, just because they are coming from a person of colour.

In fact, after his tirade, he went on to say that he has never experienced any form of racism out on the trails. And that bikers are friendly and just stoked to see other people riding. And that he has friends with money (did he mention Porsches and fancy watches?) who never think of venturing into the countryside for a bike ride, in spite of their wealth. So which is it? Is there racism in mountain biking, putting up all those barriers, or is it simply down to the fact that 'mountain' biking tends to happen outside of the city, where most BAME (I don't like that term either) people live in the UK? I agree that there are historical reasons why BAME people live in inner cities, and there is prejudice and inequality, but that's not the fault of mountain biking or mountain bikers.

Although it didn't go very deep, I'm glad that this episode was made and like you, I would like to find a solution to the division and hate that seems to be spreading around the western world. Mtb was my escape from all this craziness, but here it is, raising its ugly head, but not from someone who has been heavily involved in the sport. I listened to Elliots instagram post back in June and I agree with most of what he said but not all of his logic. Some of it I didn't understand and I guess I was hoping that this podcast might have touched on those things.

Thanks and keep up the good work!

This feature has 8 comments.

Added a comment about feature Eliot Jackson and Phil Young on Racism in Mountain Biking 10/14/2020 8:59 AM
Oz_Taylor

I get that Elliot didn't want to play the victim throughout his career, but from what he said, Elliot has come from a middle class background and has had the same opportunities as anybody else in mtb racing. I have friends who were amazing riders but they had to make do with an old, rusty bmx until they were old enough to buy their own bikes. To get to the top of any sport you usually have to start very young, and that means having parents with the means to assist you. Like Elliot said, downhill is totally objective. It's the rider against the clock. It's the same in F1, performance and money matters but the barriers of entry are even higher.

It would have been nice if the interviewer had asked if and when Elliot has been discriminated against because of his race during his mtb career. Did he miss out on any sponsor deals? Did any decisions go against him? Elliot has been a successful racer and is now a pundit and a great presenter. In the mtb world of white guys, Elliot did stand out because of his skin colour, but I never thought about that in a negative way. To me, he's just been that guy with an awesome style and the best scrubs.

To be totally honest I found Phil Young to be very provocative. Here are some quotes from his opening spiel.
'I'm proud to be black' Fair enough but as a white man, try saying 'I'm proud to be white' in public and see what you are labelled as.
'In the UK media, black people are always portrayed in a negative way'. Always? Really?
'There is never anything positive to say about black people' Never?
As for his history lesson on the slave trade, he needs to do some more reading. I find his comments about post war Britain to be simplistic and insulting. If the UK hadn't lost hundreds of thousands of men fighting Nazi tyranny, it's unlikely he would even have a platform today. Talking about a KKK lynching as an 'invisible barrier' to sport is beyond ridiculous. It's unfortunate but these types of conversations usually occur in an echo chamber where people are too afraid to question what they are saying.

I just don't think his kind of hyperbole and rhetoric helps.

His comments on Elliot's career were interesting. He made Elliot sound like he has been a victim, but I didn't hear that from Elliot himself. He talked about Elliot having to break through so many more barriers than anybody else. About Elliot having to be so much better than everybody else. What were those barriers? I really want to understand where racism has impacted Elliot's career but I didn't get that from this conversation.

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Added a comment about feature Ultra-Long, 210mm Travel Enduro Machine - Is This the Ultimate MTB? 9/18/2020 1:48 AM
Oz_Taylor

Thanks Paul! Certainly the most thorough bike check I've read and I'm sure everyone who reads this will take something away and try it on their bike. Here's the 'but'....I can't help thinking that theres a bit of 'bro science' going on too. I mean when you are adding pedal washers to move your pedal out 2mm (on flat pedals) are you overthinking things?

I agree with mtb design in general being marketing driven but you asked the question 'why aren't bikes like this being raced'? Maybe the top EWS guys are a lot fitter and technically better than your average guy so they can ride a 170mm enduro bike faster down a trail than most could on any purpose built machine. I mean Sam rode his enduro bike to 6th at the world, as did Graves (3rd) back at PMB. Do you think Sam Hill would be faster on a 38lb (guess) 210mm travel bike, or his 30lb race bike over 3 days of enduro racing? I think that current enduro bikes have been refined to specifically suit the format, rather than being an ultimate all round machine, as featured here.

This feature has 74 comments.

Added a comment about news blog RESULTS - Jesse Melamed and Isabeau Courdurier Win EWS Zermatt 9/4/2020 10:40 AM
Oz_Taylor

Yes Matty Stuttard!

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This news blog has 7 comments.

Liked a comment on the item Rasta Turner RFX 8/28/2020 1:41 AM

what year is this bike?

Liked a bike check Scott Gambler 900 Tuned 6/22/2020 6:41 AM
Scott Gambler 900 Tuned
Added a comment about feature 2021 FOX Suspension Lineup Unveiled 4/7/2020 1:58 AM
Oz_Taylor

Yea I dunno it's strange. These are MSRPs so VAT should be included. The products are actually cheaper to buy in Canada than the US, and like you say roughly 30% more expensive in Europe.

This feature has 25 comments.

Liked a comment on the item The All-New Antidote Carbonjack Enduro Bike is Here 3/4/2020 7:38 AM

Also, it's a nice looking bike but from an engineering point of view, the cut outs, etc aren't the most efficient way to use carbon fibre in terms of weight and strength. Large section monocoque structures are.

Liked a comment on the item INTENSE Factory Racing Announces 2020 UCI World Cup Downhill Series Team 2/9/2020 3:48 AM

Do they need to have them?

Liked a bike check Paulchen 1/14/2020 2:22 AM
Paulchen
Liked a bike check Gruta's Transition 1/12/2020 11:57 AM
Gruta's Transition
Added a comment about video Getting Personal: Cédric Gracia 11/18/2019 12:54 PM

Wow he's only 41! I just checked him out on Wiki to confirm and the opening sentence made me LOL.

'Cédric Gracia is a French mountain biker, who now lives in Andorra with his team manager’s wife.'

Brilliant.

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This video has 12 comments.

Liked a bike check GT LTS 1000DS 10/14/2019 1:03 PM
GT LTS 1000DS
Added a comment about feature Op-Ed - DON’T SPOIL THE RESULTS IN THE TITLE 9/18/2019 11:44 PM
Oz_Taylor

F**k Peter. Hardline Qualis laughing laughing laughing

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This feature has 49 comments.

Liked a comment on the item Op-Ed - DON’T SPOIL THE RESULTS IN THE TITLE 9/18/2019 11:41 PM

haha, this article rubs the readers the wrong way... I'm 100% with Peter. Come on Vital, don't try to avoid the blame for unethical behavior. Don't feel entitled because US readers offer you the privilege of our attention.
It's a well-known rule if you are a professional journalist. Here is a little...more

Added a comment about news blog RESULTS - Timed Training, 2019 Snowshoe, West Virginia World Cup Downhill 9/5/2019 3:32 PM
Oz_Taylor

Looks like Bruni backed off at the bottom. Those rocks are no match for his setup.

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This news blog has 6 comments.